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What causes anosmia?

ANSWER

Nasal congestion from a cold, allergy, sinus infection, or poor air quality is the most common cause of anosmia. Other causes include:

  • Nasal polyps
  • Injury to nose and smell nerves from surgery or head trauma
  • Exposure to toxic chemicals
  • Certain medications
  • Cocaine abuse
  • Old age
  • Medical conditions such as Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, multiple sclerosis, nutritional deficiencies, congenital conditions, and hormonal disturbances.
  • Radiation treatment of head and neck

SOURCES:

American Rhinologic Society: "Loss of Taste and Smell Stinks!"

Mayo Clinic: "The Loss of Smell (Anosmia)."

American Academy of Family Physicians: "Smell and Taste Disorders: A Primary Care Approach."

National Institutes of Health: "Smell Disorders."

Reviewed by Neil Lava on May 05, 2019

SOURCES:

American Rhinologic Society: "Loss of Taste and Smell Stinks!"

Mayo Clinic: "The Loss of Smell (Anosmia)."

American Academy of Family Physicians: "Smell and Taste Disorders: A Primary Care Approach."

National Institutes of Health: "Smell Disorders."

Reviewed by Neil Lava on May 05, 2019

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What are the symptoms of anosmia?

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